Councillor behind Portsmouth homeless controversy: '˜I hope what I said has not been misread'
PORTSMOUTH Councillor Colin Galloway has elaborated on his comments about rough sleepers in the city.
The Ukip councillor for the Nelson ward made the comments in a motion due to be debated at Portsmouth City Council next Tuesday.
He said: ‘These beggars, vagrants, rough sleepers, homeless, troubled folks or whatever label you want to put on them must be removed from our city and placed in specific care whether they want to or not.
‘We have tried the soft approach and have found it wanting.
‘It’s time for some serious tough love.
‘We need to save our city and we need to save these lost souls.’
His statement was met with anger from the general public and other councillors – many of whom said that Cllr Galloway’s comments were too aggressive.
Speaking to The News, Cllr Galloway says that the public may have misinterpreted the message he wanted to get across.
He explained: ‘Homeless people should not be homeless; it is as simple as that.
‘To clarify, I would like to see all of our rough sleepers rounded up and taken to a centre, where each of them has their needs specifically evaluated.
‘From there, we can work out where is best for them to go afterwards – either for housing, or rehabilitation due to substance addiction.
‘We should consider all options for them.’
However, Cllr Galloway says that his previous comments – in which he described the homeless as ‘detritus’ – still stand.
He added: ‘I hope that was I said has not been misread, but I stand by the comments I have made.’